Desperation: A Love Story

Monday, October 1, 2012 | 0 Comment(s)

This is my 300th blog post.  Quite an accomplishment.  As a celebration of said benchmark, I planned a effusive, raw, and uncensored post about my dreams, goals for the future, and aspirations in general.  As with anytime I make a plan, life intervened and said personal reflection has been postponed until post 301.  In its place i present to you the comedy/tragedy that was my weekend.  I hope, as you read, you will grasp why writing about any other subject today would simply be impossible.

There are many kinds of love.  You have the love you feel for a significant other; a love characterized by both affection and hopefully the ability to challenge and grow together as people.  You have friend love; love that is enhanced through shared experience and mutual comfort.  And of course you have nurturing love; the love you feel toward a child or pet, characterized by a compulsion to keep them safe, happy, and protected.

This love story, is about the later.  The love that drives us to protect and do no harm, despite the constant and almost dehumanizing situations which taunt us to act rashly.

This love story starts, like so many before them, with a text from my wife while i was at work thursday night:

Wife: OMG! Grover ate all the flour I bought for the muffins! And scattered the rest all over the downstairs.  (see attached picture)
Wife: Grover may have a problem with cocaine, I mean flour   ;)

And everything was well and good all the next day and into Friday night.  When i came home at 3am, both pups woke up diligently, did their business, and went back to bed.

The Saturday morning brunch switch-off happened around noon, shortly after my co-workers and i awoke from lasts nights revelry.  The brunch switch involves wifey returned home from he 10 am brunch with some gal pals, and me taking off for brunch with my brosefolopods.  We have about 30 mins of overlap to plan the day and make nighttime plans.  With offsetting schedules toward the end of the week, we have become efficient communicators.  As our brunch ships passed each other, the sign from the bow was an "all clear".  We made plans for going out that (Saturday) night, and I left.

I can say, with almost absolute certainty, that it takes my dog 42 hours to digest a bag of flour.  The 42 hours ended at 1:45pm EST on Saturday.   When i returned home post Saturday errands, my wife reported that Grover has the runs, bad.  Twice in the last hour.  Adding to the excitement of Grover's now manifesting gastrointestinal distress is that Grover is a nervous poo'er.  This means that on days when Grover doesn't have any stomach issues, he still routinely goes to the side of a field, optimally a private space behind a tree or amidst some tall grass, to do his business.  He doesn't like being watched and really doesn't like being interrupted (who does though, really).  This particular quirk of Grover's is even funnier when you consider that when wife or i try to go to the bathroom, Grover has taken to barking at us at top volume.  We have not yet discovered the origin of this barking.  We have found a place for a water squirt-bottle in our bathroom however.

So, on a good day he poops privately.  When Grover has the runs . . . he runs.  He goes from adolescent's bedroom private to Ted Kaczynski private.  Grover takes off into the back of the woods separating our house and our neighbors house.  This is WELL out of my reach and sight.  Other times he's sprinted for the road, to get easier access to neighboring woods.  I'm trying to get across that Grover can be a shit to take for a shit.

Grover's "brown cycle" of a poop per hour continues throughout the after.  4:15pm, 5:00pm, 6:30pm, 7:15pm.  All poops with pop (they literally made a popping sound that i heard from outside his wooded cave of solitude).   But, we were meeting people for dinner at 8 . . . Decision time.  I am already pretty sleepy.  Thursday and Friday were late nights, and i was woken up early each morning this week by the guys painting our house (someone house painting seems to involve *mostly* just scraping the area around my bedroom).  When we left for dinner i was already, what my wife called, "a little loopy".

We ate from 8-9:30.  no big deal.  A fun dinner with friends. By 9:30 i had lost the "a little" adjective from the front of my loopy.  After saying farewell to our friends, i apparently staggered drunken-like (had only had a beer or two) towards the car.  I did this, not realizing that my wife was not with me (chatty chatty cathy).  It wasn't until our friend remarked, "Um . . . i think Matt is staggering off without you", did my giggle-pus of a wife turn and catch-up.  'Zonked' was the new adjective being used to describe my level of exhaustion.

When we returned home at 10pm, we knew there was the possibility that we were about to clean up poop.  A distinct possibility.  As wifey simultaneously opened the door and said, "oh Grovey" with a mixture of sympathy and disgust --  i knew that Grover has left us some Hershey's goodness in our front room.  As I took the pups outside, i heard my wife muttering to herself "it's only mud . . . it's only mud . . . it's only mud".  I don't think she convinced herself fully.  The thing with cleaning up loose stool is that no matter how clean you make the floor, you can't clean the image out of your mind.

The pooping continued.  10:30, 11:15 (i crashed out on the bed), 12:30 (wife went to bed).

At 4:30am, I turn my head to see Grover (a practiced sleeper) sitting next to the bed and starring at me with begging eyes.  Unmistakable poop-face.   With the leftover pieces of my humanity, i dragged myself out of bed, and assembled vestiges of clothing.  This amounted to a robe (no belt), crocs, and underwear.  Falcor (our puppy), ever the little brother and not wanting to miss out on any potential for fun, awoke and hopped downstairs with us.  Once outside, Falcor pee'd and then started scavenging for crunchy leaves to eat (one of his favorite activities).  Since i could not manage supervising the puppy whilst simultaneously taking Grover on his vision-quest for a poop spot (remember, still in a belt-less robe), I shuffled Falcor inside and returned to my ailing doggy.  15 minutes and a bunch of imbedded thorns later and I am haphazardly discarding my robe as I mount the stairs to go back to bad with Grover.  When I get to the top of the stairs, i smell poop.   My first reaction is that I am just smelling poop everywhere at this point.  Then i realized that since Falcor had a few minutes to burn, he decided to take a crap in our dressing room.  Awesome.

This is where love comes in.  Falcor, I am happy to report, is not dead.  THAT is love.  I bag his poop, back downstairs, throw it on the porch, grab the cleaning supplies, and start back upstairs.  As I am disinfecting our poop floor in my underwear, severely sleep deprived, I realize that one of Falcor's poop logs had actually rolled and hidden itself snuggly on top of my wife's discarded sweatshirt.  Another bag, another trip downstairs, more disinfectant.  Still, I didn't kill either dog.  Love.  Love and almost desperation.  Finally, now 5am, I crawl into bed, Both dogs tucked back into their dog beds.

5:15 Grover is sitting next to the bed with that same original desperation face.  I am not kidding.  Wife got this one.  Took him outside (sans Falcor), and back up.  5:45, same face again.  Me again.  This is where the desperation began.  As I sleepwalked downstairs with Grover, I lost the ability to reason.  He could have done his business on me at that point, and I think i just would have crawled into our bathtub and fallen asleep.  I could not do this anymore.  But, Grover comes first.  And he could  do this some more.  And because i love him, desperately, even at my most stripped down (literally and figuratively) i  persevered. Because this kind of love, this love that yokes us to the well-being of another, less self-reliant, living thing, is egoless.  It is this love that will make us wade through and drown in the worst, to keep our charge's head above water.

And so i pulled some bedding out of the hamper and made us a bed on the couch.  a little circle of comfy material for him to rest his assuredly sore bum, and a decently soft spot for my consciousness to slip away.  We went out again at 6:30.  My wife told me the next morning that she heard Grove walking around downstairs around 7:15 and took him out again.  Honestly, the next thing I remember i was upstairs in my bed with Grover asleep next to me, and it was 10am.  Wifey had left for (wait for it) puppy training classes with Falcor, and Grove and I were left in a mutual heap on the bed upstairs.  I trust this was due to a large effort, not unlike the one described above, by my wife.

I didn't leave the house Sunday.  This was due to: my wife's need to be out of the house, our need not to have Grover poop in the house again, and my need to be able get the amount of sleep necessary to identify loved one's at a glance.  By Sunday night Grover was back to a realistic pooping pace and I was in need of a sizable chunk of time spent not perseverating about my dogs' bowels.

Ironically, I am spending said time (which is now), telling you all this tale of love, desperation, and excrement.

Which can mean only one thing, it MUST be true love.

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